The above-shown press kit is from May 1996. It includes six items:
- A full-color, two-pocket folder
- CD-ROM of Issue No. 7, featuring Cracker and their exclusive live performance song, “100 Flower Power Maximum”
- Four packets of press/promotional information, totaling 17 pages. These include two press releases, one fact sheet, and one packet of articles and reviews.
This press kit is exceptionally rare. I have only seen it for sale on eBay only once in the past 10 years … and I happened to be fortunate enough to purchase it!
Additional photos of items are located after the descriptions of the press materials below.
Press Release: LaunchTM, The World’s Top-Selling Entertainment CD-ROM, Enters Second Year of Publication (2 pages). Summary Quote:
LAUNCH achieves #1 status during first year of business through content development, use of cutting-edge technologies, credible excellence in editorial, increased retail distribution and unprecedented access to top artists.
Press Release: LaunchTM Blasts into 2nd Strong Year as World’s Leading Entertainment CD-ROM with Issue #7 (2 pages). Summary Quote:
LAUNCH #7, available in over 6,000 retail locations June 4, features exclusive interactive interviews & performances from top-10, multi-platinum recording artists Gin Blossoms, Cracker, superstar Pete Townshend and much more!
Fact Sheet: LaunchTM, The Nation’s #1 Entertainment CD-ROM Fact Sheet (2 pages). Includes sections on what Launch is, what it looks like, various forms of content (music, film, animation, interactive entertainment), how much it costs, where it is sold, and contact information for more details. Some excerpts:
Attracting a culturally literature, trend-setting adult 18-34 lifestyle group, LAUNCH has a particularly strong following of upscale, entertainment oriented users.
LAUNCH content is accessed through an intuitive city design. Entertainment explorers embark upon their journey to Launch’s multi media city by slipping the Launch disc into their CD-ROM drives. Immediately, the gateway to the city appears on screen … a feast for the eyes, ears and imagination!
LAUNCH is available at over 4000 retailers nationwide including Barnes & Noble, Borders, Computer City, Musicland/Sam Goody, Tower Records, Virgin Megastores and many more.
Packet of Articles and Reviews (11 pages). All items are one page each, except the final one, which is four pages.
Computer User, April 1996, page 25. “Launch: The CD-ROM Magazine.”
L.A. Life, April 7, 1996, page 12. “CD-ROM mag aimed at rock fans.”
Billboard, April 26, 1996, page 76. “The Enter*Active File: CD-ROM Magazines Hit Early Hurdles.”
MTV Radio Network, April 1, 1996, page 2. “The Morning Facts.”
Media and Publishing: Book Publishing section, page 250. Photo of Launch Cityscape with caption: “A page from the CD-ROM magazine Launch, which made its debut in May , carries advertising likely to appeal to its youthful, computer-literate audience. One of a small number of CD-ROM magazines available in the U.S., Launched focused on music, movies, and computer games.”
The Orange County Register, April 5, 1996. “Launch CD-ROM a must for rock fans,” by Mark Brown.
UNIDENTIFIED PUBLICATION, Cyber Music by Steven P. Wheeler. Three paragraph summary of Launch, plus two screenshots of interviews with Bush and with Tori Amos.
Pix, date unknown (4 pages). E-Projects section, edited by Holly Stuart Hughes. “In this issue of Pix, we unveil E-Projects, a new column devoted to real life examples of digital imaging at work. In each column, we’ll showcase a variety of projects—everything from CD-ROM ’zines to interactive advertising to cutting-edge photocomposites and more—that use photography and new technology in intriguing, forward-thinking ways.” This article includes a lengthy section (six paragraphs plus two photos) on how Dewar’s Scotch became one of the earliest advertisers in Launch, as well as in other “digizines” (an old term for magazines on CD-ROM) such as Blender, Medio, and Digizine.